Saturday, June 28, 2008

Please Pass the Xanax

I really am losing it!

First off, I woke up hungover. Chalk that up to the 2nd bottle of wine Brian and I split. It wouldn't have been a big deal but I was supposed to meet up with Marisol and TapMouse for coffee and knitting before our class. Of course, I was running a little late and definitely not at full power.

On my way to dyeing class with Scout, I heard a funny noise under the car. Kind of like when you hit a rock and it bounces around the wheel well for a second. But then the sound went away. Well, when I exited the freeway the car was driving funny and didn't sound right. So I pulled over as soon as I could. Sure enough, flat tire. Thank goodness for cell phones! I called a tow truck and he changed the tire and made sure I had enough air in the donut. (Just so you know, I can change a tire. But I didn't want to get dirty and I was wearing flip flops.) Now I'm 30 miles from home and I can't go more than 50 miles and hour on the donut. OK- whatever, I'll figure it out after class. The car is driving so funny now that I know I'll have to find a shop before heading home. (No post class yarn crawl for me. Boo!!!) I made it to class on time but missed out on pre-class knitting.

During class, I screwed up my warping board. No problem! I'll just pull it off and start over. Yeah- Great idea. My yarn is now tangled within an inch of it's life. TapMouse was so sweet. She untangled while I wound another skein. Then that skein popped off the swift with only about 20 yards left to wind. Yup- completely tangled. I actually threw away the last few yards. I was so fed up, I really wanted to go cry. But trying not to look like a psycho won out over dissolving into tears. Another woman in the class (Elaine) helped me warp my skein while tapmouse continued to untangle. She managed to save the skein and my sanity. Bless her!

On the upside, Wonder Mike of Y Knit directed me to a great little shop who fixed my tire for $15 and it held all the way home. Scout brought yarn to sell. (We pulled numbers to see who got to shop first!) And I'm learning to dye!!! But I have to tell you, it's a good thing no dye was used today. I'm sure I would have ended up with it all over myself.

I tell you, I'm living in this hyper anxious state right now. Really, none of these things were that big of a deal. But added all up and on top of my current state of mind... well, my coping skills are being put to the test.

I'm also just disappointed that I was such a pill today. I met a bunch of people for the first time that I "know" online. And I wasn't my normal, fun self. Hopefully, tomorrow will go better. I'm really not this tightly wound. Really. I promise.

Friday, June 27, 2008

The Bitter End

I'm still here. Still studying. Starting to get really burnt out on it though. I can't wait for this test to be done. Most of my friends are finishing this weekend. So I'm trying to stay focused but I'm definitely starting to be really done with it all.

The end came today for the Central Park Hoodie too. I came to terms with the fact that it wasn't going to be right. But just in case, I measured my favorite old sweater (FOS) to compare to the CPH. (Yeah- I know. I should have thought of that a LONG time ago.) So not only was the CPH 3 inches longer than FOS, it was 4 inches narrower. In my mind, I live in a fun house mirror where I'm 3 inches taller and 50 pounds lighter. What on earth was I thinking?!?!?!? Knitter denial. It's a powerful thing.

I'm not casting on again for CPH quite now. My sweater attention has turned to the very popular February Lady Sweater. (Rav link. And if you aren't on Ravelry yet, what are you waiting for????) I've had some Elann Peruvian Highland Wool in a beautiful chocolate color that has wanted to be something for a long time. This sweater is perfect for that yarn! Thanks to Poppins who sent me the yarn as part of a secret pal swap!

I also cast on for the Tesserae socks in Yarn Pirate BFL in Fog. These are gonna be so pretty. But the yarn is so thin, I'm getting 10 stitches to the inch. Granted, I'm a tight knitter but the fabric isn't even that dense. Maybe the rest of my BFL becomes lace. These socks are 84 stitches around!! They are going to take forever. Oh well!

And just so this post won't be picture-less...

Sanguin Gryphon- Phaedrus

The Sanguine Gryphon Eidos sock yarn in Phaedrus from TLE.

Have a great weekend!

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Saturday, June 21, 2008

Summer Lovin'

There's been a lot of talk in the blogosphere lately about summer cocktails. Some people are die hard Margarita fans. Some are on the new Mojito kick. A few are trying to spice up their BBQ's with Sangria. Me??? Well, those three are fine. But I'm always up for a good Yarntini!!!

Yarntini- Three

The Loopy Ewe had a nice variety of Yarntini sport weight come in this week. And you better believe I was stalking it! (Vintage, Cosmopolitan, and Gimlet) Now I just need to save up for my STR binge that I'm planning... (shhhhh! Don't tell!)

I also got the June shipment for the Yarn Pirate Booty Club. Click here for the spoiler!

On the way home from kickboxing today at 9:30 it was already 95 degrees out. Ooof! Stay cool on this first day of summer!

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Friday, June 20, 2008

Bright Sunshiney Day

Look what happens when all you do is sit, study, and knit for a good couple of weeks...

Marigold Socks- Done

Marigold Socks by FlintKnits
Yarn: BMFA STR lightweight in Sunstone
Needles: Addi Bamboo dpn's size 2.75mm
Date Started: 5/29/08
Date Finished: 6/20/08
Mods: None- They are a little tight for me. But I should know better than to think my big feet are going to fit into a medium sized pattern. Plus, I'm a tight knitter and maybe should have gone up one more needle size.

But once they are on, they're lovely!

Marigold Socks- On

Even though I clearly can't capture that in a photo today. The color is much more accurate in the first picture. I was hoping they would be a little more slouchy like in the pictures in the pattern. Overall, I'm really happy with them. They are happy and sunny and I wish it wasn't 100 degrees here today or I'd wear them. Instead, they're at the sock beach. (AKA- blocking on the edge of my tub!)


Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Things I'm Loving Right Now

I usually don't do product laden posts- except for yarn. But I've tried out a couple of things lately that I really love. So much so that I figured I'd pass them on. I realize this just shows that I have too much time on my hands at the moment.

CoverGirl Lash Blast Mascara
. For years I've been a devoted follower of the Maybelline pink and green tube. Lash Blast is far better at making my lashes pop. Plus... the brown is really brown. Not brown-black. I'm pretty fair so the darker colors often make me look silly. And this never, ever, ever clumps or ends up underneath my eyes. Yes, the large brush takes some getting used to but it's well worth it. My friend in Boston practically dragged me to CVS to pick some up. She was absolutely right!

After reading a review in Lucky Magazine, I was really interested in Carson Softsheen Magic Shaving Powder. I found it at Long's and Target for around $3 a can. You mix 2 T. of the powder with 2 T. of water. Spread it on and wait 5-7 minutes. I used an old jelly jar to shake it up. Yes, it's smelly. Yes, it made a mess. But my legs are very smooth. Just be sure to follow the direction since I have read some reviews about skin irritation if it is left on too long.

I have rediscovered the beauty of homemade ice cream. YUM! In the past week I've made mint chocolate chip with mint from my "garden", Strawberry Frozen Yogurt, and Orange Basil sorbet. Did you read about the Harlot's adventures in ice cream at TNNA? Well, Jeni of the famous ice cream shop published some of her recipes in the June 2008 edition of Food and Wine magazine. I made the Cherry Lambic sorbet. And yes, it is amazing! Next up, roasted peach when I pick up some peaches on Saturday at the Farmer's Market.

Nartian and Tapmouse let us in on a Bay Area store- Ichiban Kan. It's a Japanese dollar store. There are adorable pens, erasers, and lots of Bento Box style lunch sets. My favorite are the sheep totes. Cute, cheap, and environmentally friendly!

Lotus Yarns Aura- Prayer for Rain

Finally, I'm loving this sparkly yarn I picked up at Yarn4Socks. It's Aura from Lotus yarns in Prayer for Rain. I think maybe a shawl???? Seriously, I need to knit faster. Too many projects! Psst- there may have been yarntini sport up last night at TLE. There's still 1 color left if you hurry!

I'm still studying for my boards. I'm going to finish the content portion today. And then questions, questions, and more questions... 2 weeks from today...


Friday, June 13, 2008

Me in Photos

Photo Meme

1. Nell 1, 2. Fries, 3. High School, 4. Verde, 5. Vince Vaughn, 6. Mojito!, 7. Thailand, 8. Tarts, 9. Nurse, 10. Family, 11. Funny, 12. Chicken

The rules:

a. Type your answer to each of the questions below into Flickr Search.
b. Using only the first page, pick an image.
c. Copy and paste each of the URLs for the images into fd’s mosaic maker).

The questions:

1. What is your first name?
2. What is your favorite food?
3. What high school did you go to?
4. What is your favorite color?
5. Who is your celebrity crush?
6. Favorite drink?
7. Dream vacation?
8. Favorite dessert?
9. What you want to be when you grow up?
10. What do you love most in life?
11. One Word to describe you.
12. Your flickr name.

As for the Central Park Hoodie... I'm still not sure what to do. Most of you think I can block it out. 5elementknitr suggested adding underarm panels when it's done if it's too small. That's a great fall back. Hmmm... For now, I'm just going to knit on my marigold socks and keep thinking about it.


Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Dealing With Denial

Last night as I was falling asleep, I was thinking about my WIP's. Some of them have been on the needles for awhile and I was trying to pinpoint what was keeping me from finishing. (or even working on them.) Specifically, the Central Park Hoodie.

I LOVE this pattern. It's pretty much perfect for everyday use where we live. Days are warm but it can really cool off at night when the sea breeze comes over the hills. A good looking cardigan that isn't a sweatshirt style is invaluable. But I'm a tight knitter. And I think it's turning out too small. There... I said it. It might be too small. This morning I'm facing my fears and trying to make a decision about what to do.

CPH- Too small

As a matter of comparison, I "pinned" the finished back of CPH over an A&F sweater that I dearly love but is starting to get a little thread bare. My old cardi is 10 years old. (I bought it when I was interviewing for my first job with A&F out of college.) It's pretty much the perfect "go with everything" sweater. I throw it in my bag all the time just in case. But it needs replacing. That's where CPH comes in. Did I mention I love the fit of the old one? Yeah- herein lies the issue.

CPH- Too narrow

Here's the underarm. See. It's about an inch shy on both sides. But I didn't stretch it out and the cables will stretch, right? right????

CPH- Hem too small

The hem. I made CPH plenty long. But the ribbing REALLY pulls in on the sides. That's going to hit me right at the hip. I'm thinking that's not the most flattering thing.

Now, I know what you're going to ask. What's my gauge? Well, I'm getting 5 stitches to the inch. The pattern calls for 4.25. But I like the fabric and the cables look great at this gauge. Don't lecture me. I'm fragile.

Here's where you all come in... what should I do? Soldier on? Rip out and try to get gauge? Rip out and just go up a size? Then there's the issue of yarn. I may be a little shy on the yarn. About 1/2 a ball. Help! Tell me what to do!

In other knitting news, the Marigold Socks are flying off the needles.

Marigold Socks- 1st one done

The first one is already done. It's a little tight but it fits. (Do you see a theme here?) I'm completely in love with the color. It just makes me happy every time I pick them up. Last night, I was up WAY too late getting the second one going. Yet I still woke up at 6 am to a cat begging to go outside. That cat is currently sleeping quietly on the living room floor. Stinker!

Sunday, June 08, 2008

It's All About Me

I was tagged by KnittinWolf for this meme about a week ago. And I've been very lax about getting to it. Sorry!

The rules of the game get posted at the beginning. Each player answers the questions about themselves. At the end of the post, the player then tags 5-6 people and posts their names, then goes to their blogs and leaves them a comment, letting them know they’ve been tagged and asking them to read your blog. Let the person who tagged you know when you’ve posted your answer.

1. What was I doing 10 years ago?
I was just headed home from my junior year at Amherst and starting my jobs a legal intern and a sales associate at the mall.

2. What are 5 things on my to-do list for today (not in any particular order)?
Study for boards, load and run the dishwasher, make sorbet, start laundry?, and study for boards. I should probably shower at some point too.

3. Snacks I enjoy:
Chewy sweettarts, hot tamales, chips, almost everything really. But I'm a candy girl not really a chocolate girl

4. Things I would do if I were a billionaire:
Buy a house in Napa, a house in Tuscany, and a lake house in Michigan. Pay off the student loans of everyone in my nursing class. Pay off my immediate family's debt. Travel. Travel. Travel. Then have lots of babies.

5. Places I have lived:
Hamilton, MI, Chicago, IL, Amherst, MA, South Caicos, Turks and Caicos Islands (best semester abroad ever!), Columbus, OH, and Dublin, CA- I've been around.

6. Jobs I've had:
Retail sales associate, many jobs in corporate retail at a couple of companies, catering, campus cleanup for graduation and reunion, and coming soon to a nursing job!

7. Peeps I want to know more about:
I'm not tagging anyone but feel free to jump in!


Saturday, June 07, 2008

Buy Me Some Peanuts!

This week was really busy. I thought once I was out of school my life would settle down. But no! Between all the things I've been ignoring at home and starting Kaplan for the nursing boards, I've been running all over the Bay.

The highlight of the week for sure was Wednesday's baseball game between the Detroit Tigers and the Oakland A's. My sister got tickets for my graduation. And check out how close we were...

Baseball- We're this close

Literally, this is the view from my seat just over the wall. I've never been that close at a game. Usually, we're way up in the upper deck.

Baseball- Dugout Warm Up

We got to see the Tiger's pitchers warm up in the dugout just a few steps from where we were sitting.

The best part was a little boy sitting next to us. He was probably 4 or maybe a small 5. But all the players who passed gave him a ball. I swear that kid left with 6 baseballs! I kept teasing his Dad that I was going to steal the next one. It was also really funny that they were from Flint. (We're from Holland, MI.) It cracked me up that I was meeting other Michiganders at an A's game.

Too bad the Tiger's lost 10-2 and I was pretty sunburned. Oh well. Still a great time at the Old Ball Game!

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Boston Extravaganza!

OK- Get comfortable. Pour yourself a cup of coffee. Because this is going to be long.

I had a WONDERFUL trip to Boston. I took off Wednesday from SFO.

Boston- On the Way

Lucky me with a window seat!

Anastasia Socks- Finishing

I finished the Anastasia socks on the way there. Just had to wait until I landed to bind off since I didn't have a needle on the plane. Official FO pics later on...

My friend Laura was nice enough to let me crash in her adorable Beacon Hill apartment for a couple of nights before we headed West for the wedding. We had all day Thursday to hang out in Boston. I'm supposed to tell you that the trolley tour was my idea. But really, she's always wanted to do it and needed someone to visit as an excuse. Good enough for me! We hit the trolley circuit for 6 hours on Thursday and went all over the City. Here's a sample of everything we saw...

Boston- Beacon Hill

Laura's street- I miss East Coast architecture.

Boston- Fenway Field

The field at Fenway. Too bad the Sox were away. I would have loved to see a game.

Boston- Citgo Sign

The Citgo Sign

Boston- Delish!

Pizza and arancini in the North End. California is also seriously lacking in good pizza.

Boston- Laura Digs In

Laura digs in!

Boston- Waterfront

The Waterfront.

Boston- Architecture

More Architecture.

Boston- Make way!

And, of course, Make way!!!!

Friday, we headed out to Western Mass to Laura's family's house. They were kind enough to host us for a night. Check out her amazing house.

Boston- Sweeney Home

It's built in the 1800's and her family has meticulously decorated and maintained it to preserve it's historical integrity.

Boston- Sweeney Pond

This is their front yard! It's a lovely place to enjoy coffee and a newly cast on sock. But more on that later too!

Boston- Sweeney Studio

Laura's dad is an art professor. And this is his studio. I'm so jealous!

Saturday was the wedding and (since I'm an idiot) I didn't get any pictures until later in the evening. Needless-to-say, it was lovely. The bride glowed. The groom looked at her adoringly. And everyone danced until very late. See...

Boston- Ninne's Wedding

The camera phone doesn't hold up in the dark!

The night ended in a little bit of pain for me. Someone had broken a glass earlier in the evening but I thought it had been throughly cleaned up. As the evening wore on, my shoes started to hurt and I took them off to keep dancing. You can see where this is going, right?

Boston- Man down!

Yup- that's my blood on a napkin. Luckily, I have a doctor friend who was thinking more clearly than I was. She took me into the kitchen of the country club where we pulled a nice hunk of glass from my toe. It was pretty funny actually since no serious harm was done.

After brunch on Sunday, we headed back to Boston to catch our flights home. The drive back gave me plenty of knitting time...

Boston- The Pike

Mass Pike and Marigold socks!!!!

Boston- Headed Home

Finally, headed home to San Francisco on Sunday night. It was a wonderful weekend with lots of time with my best girlfriends. I couldn't have asked for a better vacation. More pictures on my Flickr Set.

The Contest... Thanks to WiKnit, I had 56 votes. Holy cow! I hope some of you decide to stick around.

25 votes for Marigold in STR.
20 votes for Tessarae in YP.
11 votes for Jenny Wren in Noro.

I officially cast on for the Marigolds on Thursday night while Laura tried to ignore me.

Boston- New Project

I used the random number generator to pick a winner from those who voted for Marigolds... Congrats, Andrea! I'm emailing you today about your surprise package!


Anastasia Socks

Pattern: Anastasia Socks by Minty Fresh
Yarn: The Knittery Merino Cashmere Sock in Orchid
Needles: KP dpn's in size 2.5
Date Started: 10/5/07- Can you believe it???
Date Finished: 5/28/08
Mods: None. The pattern is so great!

Anastasia Socks- Done

Even the swirls match up!

Finally, the May edition of the Rockin' Sock Club arrived while I was gone. Click here to see a photo. I'm sure you've seen it already but I'll still hide it just in case.

Did you make it all the way? Thanks for hanging in! I think I need a nap.

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